Insider Intelligence delivers leading-edge research to clients in a variety of forms, including full-length reports and data visualizations to equip you with actionable takeaways for better business decisions.
In-depth analysis, benchmarks and shorter spotlights on digital trends.
Learn More
Interactive projections with 10k+ metrics on market trends, & consumer behavior.
Learn More
Proprietary data and over 3,000 third-party sources about the most important topics.
Learn More
Industry KPIs
Industry benchmarks for the most important KPIs in digital marketing, advertising, retail and ecommerce.
Learn More
Client-only email newsletters with analysis and takeaways from the daily news.
Learn More
Analyst Access Program
Exclusive time with the thought leaders who craft our research.
Learn More

About Insider Intelligence

Our goal at Insider Intelligence is to unlock digital opportunities for our clients with the world’s most trusted forecasts, analysis, and benchmarks. Spanning five core coverage areas and dozens of industries, our research on digital transformation is exhaustive.
Our Story
Learn more about our mission and how Insider Intelligence came to be.
Learn More
Rigorous proprietary data vetting strips biases and produces superior insights.
Learn More
Our People
Take a look into our corporate culture and view our open roles.
Join the Team
Contact Us
Speak to a member of our team to learn more about Insider Intelligence.
Contact Us
See our latest press releases, news articles or download our press kit.
Learn More
Advertising & Sponsorship Opportunities
Reach an engaged audience of decision-makers.
Learn More
Browse our upcoming and past events, recent podcasts, and other featured resources.
Learn More
Tune in to eMarketer's daily, weekly, and monthly podcasts.
Learn More

Amex attributes strong Q2 to robust travel and entertainment spending

The data: American Express’ billed business grew 30% year over year (YoY) in Q2, per its earnings presentation. That’s a slowdown from Q2 2021’s 51% YoY surge, which was fueled by a release of post-lockdown spending.

Here’s a closer look at Amex’s billed business segment:

  • Travel and entertainment (T&E) spending surged 84% YoY compared with last year’s 340% increase, which was heavily augmented by post-lockdown conditions.
  • Goods and services (G&S) grew 18% YoY. G&S spending in Q2 2021 increased 31% thanks to improved consumer financial metrics compared with the year before.

How we got here: Four factors may have contributed to Amex's strong Q2.

  1. Amex’s market position. Despite saying that inflation was a “modest contributor” to the quarter’s volume growth, Amex didn’t notice any significant signs of stress among its customers, CEO Steve Squeri said on the company’s earnings call. Amex’s strong positioning in the premium and ultra-premium card space suggests it has a large segment of affluent cardholders who may be less exposed to inflation than lower-income consumers.
  2. T&E recovery tailwinds. A strong jump in travel spending through the last quarter helped support Amex’s billed business: Spending on airlines increased 148% annually, while restaurants and lodging grew 48% and 90% YoY, respectively. Corporate travel, which has been slower to recover, also increased in Q2. Squeri noted that T&E spending surpassed pre-pandemic levels for the first time in April.
  3. Younger cardholder acquisitions. Amex has been working on capturing business from Gen Zers and millennials, who made up a large part of Amex’s customer base and were the fastest growing age cohort, Squeri said. These customers—who had a combined spending power of nearly $3 trillion in 2020, per YPulse—accounted for 75% of new US consumer Platinum and Gold cardholders in Q2. US consumer Platinum and Gold card acquisitions reached record highs in the quarter.
  4. Investments in digital innovations. Amex has been investing more in digital solutions. Most recently, it partnered with issuer-processor i2c so fintechs and other businesses working with i2c can launch cards on the Amex network. It’s also powering the Abra crypto card, Amex’s first major foray into cryptos. These tie-ups and investments may have helped Amex fuel more spending on its network.

What’s next? Amex’s card revamps can help it capitalize on consumer spending trends.

Amex updated rewards on its Blue Cash Everyday card earlier this month with higher cash-back rewards for online shopping and gas stations and new rewards for streaming services. And it added several new T&E perks for its Marriott Bonvoy Business card last week. Amex's reward updates can help strengthen customer loyalty and acquire new cardholders: Forty-four percent of US consumers cited rewards as their main reason for applying for a new credit card during the pandemic, per a 2022 LendingTree survey.